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Cytokine Release in Tissue-Engineered Epidermal Equivalents After Prolonged Mechanical Loading

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Prolonged mechanical loading of soft tissues may result in degeneration of these tissues, resulting in formation of pressure ulcers. The risk assessment of individuals might be improved by including measurements of the tissue response to mechanical loading. Cytokines, which are released by the top layer of the skin upon chemical irritation, might be used to determine the epidermal response to mechanical loading.
This chapter describes methods to measure the release of cytokines IL-1α, IL-1RA, and IL-8 from tissue-engineered epidermal equivalents in response to sustained mechanical loading. A custom-built loading device was used to apply load to the epidermal equivalents and the cytokines were measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.
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